Saturday, December 19, 2009

That About Sums It Up

He doesn't provide a lot of detail concerning the death of newspapers, but the author provides a pretty good overview of the newspaper industry's downhill slide.

The Internet didn't kill newspapers. Newspapers committed suicide.

Newspapers put a noose around their own neck and sawed most of the way through one leg of a three legged stool - the legs are advertising, circulation, and news.

Then newspapers stood on their rickety little stool, threw the rope over a rafter and tied it good and tight. All the Internet had to do was come along and give the stool a kick.


Then came round after round of corporate buyouts and the first great squeeze-out of reporters.

It wasn't enough for newspapers to have a 15 percent profit margin. Corporate wanted the profit margin to be bigger every year. And since the greatest expenses for newspapers are salaries and newsprint, the quickest way to give corporate what it wanted was to fire reporters and publish smaller papers.

So newspapers got worse and worse, and the bosses in Davenport, Iowa, or wherever the hell they were, screamed for more of the same.

Much of this is true for television news.

1 comment:

Spokane Al said...

Of course with newspapers we don't have watch announcers who pretend to be serious journalists while one look tells us that they were hired strictly for their photogenic features.